North korea: The quake was ultimately not due to a nuclear test

Tillerson

China's central bank tells banks to stop doing business with North Korea: officials

The Korea Meteorological Administration announced that an natural disaster of magnitude 3.2 was detected in the North Saturday afternoon, around 50 kilometers from the site of previous nuclear tests.

As previously reported, North Korea may conduct a powerful test of a hydrogen bomb in the Pacific ocean.

Reacting to Trump's assertions, North Korean leader said that remarks by "deranged" US President convinced him he is right to develop weapons for North Korea. A United States official, who studies North Korea's military politics, said it was too early to determine if the test supported North Korea's claim that it had succeeded in developing a thermonuclear weapon, "much less one that could be mounted on an ICBM and re-enter the Earth's atmosphere without burning up".

Jeffrey Lewis, the head of the East Asia Non-proliferation Program at the Middlebury Institute of Strategic Studies at Monterey, California, said: "Seismologists are very good at discriminating between earthquakes and explosions".

The Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) said that it detected two seismic events in North Korea, but they were "unlikely (to have been) man-made". The latest round of sanctions even imposed a cap on North Korea's imports of oil.

"The most probable hypothesis at present is that this is a outcome of the previous event, which was of a significant magnitude and may still have repercussions in a fracture zone", Mr Zerbo said. It will also ban imports of textiles from North Korea. North Korea has already been declared as a rogue state; so by definition it can do whatever it wants.

In public, China's foreign ministry has calmly advocated restraint, and warned Pyongyang and Washington on Friday not add oil to the fire.

The new executive order comes just days after Trump condemned North Korea before the UN General Assembly.

They also prohibit North Korea from importing any natural gas liquids and condensates, and cap Pyongyang's imports of crude oil and refined petroleum products.

"So far, I don't know that the sanctions have had much of an impact on the average North Korean", Snyder said.

North Korea's weakest nuclear test, its first one, conducted in 2006, generated a magnitude 4.3 quake.

"Today's action follows the approach used against Iran where countries, banks and individuals had to choose between Iran and the United States", said Anthony Ruggerio, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

China announced Saturday it will ban exports of some petroleum products to North Korea, as well as imports of textiles from the isolated North in compliance with a United Nations (UN) Security Council resolution.

Russian Federation and China again urged adoption of their freeze-for-freeze proposal that would halt North Korean nuclear and missile tests in exchange for the US and South Korea stopping their joint military exercises.

Tillerson spoke Thursday at a ministerial meeting of the U.N. Security Council called by the United States on "the acute threat" posed by the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi told the council it is "a practical way out" and stressed that China had "made tireless efforts for settlement to the North Korean issue".

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